University of Law accused of “despicable” debt collecting by aggrieved father

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  • why on earth is The Lawyer reporting on this? it must be a slow week with nothing much newsworthy going on. Wonder what Chuck Norris makes of it all?

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  • Father, not unconnected to the media, is taken by surprise that offspring cannot actually read after 16 years or so of education, decides to take it out on others and succeeds in humiliating son.

    As far as "lay solicitor" goes, this sort of thing only tends to confirm that people do need the training the likes of the "University" and BPP and Kaplan sell.

    Unclear whether the ire is the method chosen to pursue the debt - does seem a bit mysterious why the "university" did nothing for a couple of years - or that it could be pursued at all. Seems to be the latter. Hopeless argument.

    Take it out of the feckless child's inheritance if you must.

    21 years old? Alexander was King of Macedon at 20. 2 years older than the Vietnam average. I blame the parents.

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  • Don't think dad should take his "lay solicitor" credentials to the big leagues, might get laughed out of court...

    Everyone knows UoL, BPP etc are absolutely awful for taking money off people with no proper screening, despite the clear barriers to entry in law. That being said, a contract is a contract and if the kid in question couldn't read then a career in law probably wasn't the one for him

    I can imagine the little tyke just cowering in the corner..."please Dad, please...just let this one drop". I suspect Pops writes strongly worded letters to The Times, Points of View, Southern Rail etc.

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  • The £4,500 that the College / University of Law want the student to pay is probably not realistic. I mean, what cost is involved in printing off an extra set of manuals or having 1 more person sit in on a lecture? CoL / UoL are a bit like the banks charging extortionate amounts of money to send out a letter to a customer, telling them their account was overdrawn. In the end, they were told to reduce the amount they could charge to a maximum of £6 (if I recall correctly) as the usurious amounts they originally charged did not reflect the cost of sending out an automated letter.

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  • Have no sympathy for either party for all the reasons given above. Clearly both of them now look very foolish and are both worse off for letting it come to this, when there must have been a sensible and private solution that could have been agreed a long time ago. Classic example of where both parties cutting their losses early on would have produced a much better result than standing on perceived principles and appealing to a largely unsympathetic public for support.

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  • As a graduate of the CoL, I am with them on this. The terms and conditions are clearly set out. My time at CoL was totally enjoyable and I found the staff very helpful and I am proud to have passed through this institution. In English law you have capacity to contract at 14, so at 21 the "Lad" had more than reached his legal majority. The comments concerning mitigation and liquidated damages are frankly irrelevant. The "man" entered into a service agreement whereby the CoL offered to provide him training and he agreed to pay a fee for it. The training in the event was made available to him if he choose not to attend then thats his problem the service was still made available. The CoL kept to their side of the contract and are entitled to be paid for it. If you don't enforce this kind of thing where does it end? Next we will have those students that fail a course suing for negligence on the basis that their particular tuition was below par. The University make the service available, if you don't use it you still have to pay for the service you contracted.

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  • This looks like an ideal topic for the BBC program 'Rip Of Britain' to look at.
    At least that way every prospective student will be aware of the dangerous of
    entering an agreement with an organisation that is clearly interested
    in only making a profit.

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  • Surprised there are not other comments by would be students who have been contacted by the University.

    I myself was initially going to do the traditional LPC route, but thankfully after having researched the lesser known ILEX route, I enrolled on the Fast Track Level 6 course at Uni of Westminster.

    The UoL contacted me and informed me that I had cancelled after the deadline, highlighting that there is a liability fee amounting to the first installment.

    I felt that the deadline of 31st July is unreasonable to decide on whether you want to stick with a placement, as my results for the GDL hadn't been published yet.

    Although I understand the arguments that one should be accountable for the terms they agreed to, I guess I was certain at the time that I wanted to do the LPC.

    It will be interesting how the UoL would go about chasing me up too and whether the argument of a penalty clause stands.

    I strongly urge any would be LPC student to look into the ILEX alternative route - it simply is not in the interests of the Law Society and providers like UoL and BPP for people to know about ILEX - hence why the vast majority of law students are not even aware of this route.

    There is no elusive training contract hurdle, and you only focus on two practise modules, which is more realistic and practical as you tend to specialise in on area anyway, and you merely need to do three years of paralegal/legal assistant work to qualify as a lawyer - which is what the average LPC grad ends up doing whilst waiting in vain for that TC.

    Legal executives are now much closer to solicitors and barristers than before, they can advocate, become a partner and even become a judge.

    My first lecture is actually tonight as it were.

    I will resist paying UoL a penny more - they already have kept my initial deposit - which is fair play, but I am not paying £4k because I found a better option, and the deadline was unreasonable.

    Would be interesting to see if any more people are in a similar predicament too...I am sure there are.

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  • Oh and forgot to mention the ILEX course is only about £2k. Beats ending up in debt for £15k without a TC, right?

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